Some fabulous Victoria BC home staging statistics!

Valerie Westra owner of At First Sight Staging in Victoria BC runs a very successful home staging business and she has the statistics to prove it! I had the pleasure of being Valerie’s coach and mentor last year and I love to keep in touch and watch her continue to grow and expand her business!

Valerie is part of a great collaborative home stagers and interior stylists group that are members of Josee LaLonde’s The Housse. I’ve had the pleasure of doing several home staging business workshops at The Housse and always enjoy this great group of talented women. The Housse was conceived to address the needs for a centralized resource to serve the unique problems facing the Vancouver Island home staging and design community. They provide a full-service rental inventory to their members and promote the value and importance of home staging through the education of home owners, realtors and developers.

Victoria Stagers & Stylists Certificate of Completion Marketing Course

Victoria Stagers & Stylists Certificate of Completion Marketing Course


Here is the latest 2013 statistics collected by The Housse, Victoria’s only resource center for Home Stagers and Interior Stylists. Based on 44 properties staged by Victoria’s Home Stagers, members of The Housse (including At First Sight Home Staging Solutions): 70.7% of the properties sold in an average of 3.8 weeks for an average cost of staging to the seller of $2100.

7 properties (out of the 44) staged by At First Sight this year which were listed prior to staging. They were on the market for an average of 17 weeks and did not sell. After staging, they sold at an average of 3.2 weeks!!!

According to VREB (Victoria Real Estate Board) data 85-88% of all monthly listings do not sell. The home staging statistics speak for themselves. At First Sight Home Staging brings great value and results to the sellers and real estate agents.

CONGRATS TO ALL THE VICTORIA STAGERS! And special thanks to Josee LaLonde of The Housse for getting these statistics from your members to share!

Is Your Networking System Paying Off?

For most solopreneur home stagers NETWORKING is one of your key marketing strategies because you do not have a ‘company’ working on your behalf. You now are responsible for finding ways to attract new potential clients to work with you.

Are you joining networking groups where the members are your ideal target market, or who can give you referrals? This is an important question to ask yourself because there are only so many hours in the day that you have to spend on your marketing.

When I am teaching or conducting workshops on networking, I always recommend that you focus on ‘Quality’ and not ‘Quantity’. It’s not about how many cards can you get; it is about ‘how many relationships over time can you build’. In earlier ezines I talk about people needing to ‘Know You, Like You and Trust You’ before they will buy from you. We need to have our marketing pieces whether in person or electronically seen by them between 7 and 12 times. So it makes sense that just because you meet someone for the first time that they may not necessarily want to ‘buy from you’.

Follow up is critical after your networking event. When following up from a networking event it is considered very old school and unprofessional to follow up and try and sell something to someone you just met. You want to focus on ‘pull’ marketing rather than ‘push’ marketing so people self-select and want to buy from you. Find out how you can help them.

TOP 10 Networking TIPS – Creating a Networking System that Works For You:

This is a system that I have used for years and 85 – 95% of my business has come from people I met at networking events. The business may not have come directly from the person I met but from what is called ‘Word of Mouth’ referrals – meaning someone who met or knows me, referred someone else to me whom I had not yet met.

This is what you need to do:

  1. Determine which networking group is a good fit for you. If you are considering joining something like a BNI (Business Network International) attend as many as you can before you decide which one is a fit for you. Remember your time is money so you want to spend it in meaningful places that will give you a great ROI on your investment.
  2. Attend as a guest a few times before you decide to join. You can go to many networking events without having to become a member.
  3. If you are shy and don’t consider yourself outgoing go with a friend, but don’t stay together for the whole event.
  4. The focus in networking is on the person you are meeting not on you – Ask Questions to get to know them: “How long have you been doing what you do?”, “What do you find most challenging in your business?”, “How did you get started?”, – you are there to learn about the other person not to tell them everything about yourself first; wait your turn.
  5. Wear your name badge on your right hand side of your top – that way when shaking hands you can easily see each othe’s name.
  6. After you have chatted and exchanged business cards make a little note on the card about something to remind you of that person – sometimes a personal note on the card can be a great way to reconnect.
  7. You have heard the expression ‘The Fortune Is In The Follow Up’ it’s true! When you follow up send everyone you met an email within the week. Always ask if there is anything you can help them with in your follow up email.
  8. If there is someone you do want to meet with privately, ask them for a coffee meeting. The way to build your network is by meeting people one-on-one face-to-face so that you develop a relationship.
  9. If  you are on Facebook or LinkedIn see if they are too and connect with them. Social media is a great way to connect but stay connected by following and blogging in discussions and join groups. Make comments – become engaged so people can connect.
  10. Make sure they get into your database!!! You need to build your ‘tribe’ of followers and make great connections. You want to be sending out your enewsletter at least once a month and connecting through social media sites on a more weekly (sometimes daily basis). Mail Chimp is a ‘free’ enewsletter platform that you can customize with your logo, etc. Constant Contact is a popular software to use as well with good technical support to help you get started. With most database systems you can enter the contact name and they will then receive an email asking if they would like to sign up (OPT IN) for your ezines/newsletters. If they are really interested in what you have to say or offer, they will ‘accept’. You can always send people directly to your site to sign up for future mailings, reports, courses, announcements, etc. but just in case…

You want to make sure that every networking event you attend has your ‘ideal client’ attending as well. If not your ideal client, then look for strategic alliances to help build your business. Check out new networking events every 6 months so you meet new people. Be choosey though when you join because networking is an investment of TIME, MONEY & ENERGY! Set your intention before you go and please, have FUN!

Sizzling Summer Specials 50% OFF eBooks & Courses

I think the summer heat has finally gotten to me. I can’t believe these great ‘Sizzling Summer Specials’ I’m offering you! I know that most people love summer specials and so I thought why not send out some of my own ‘Sizzling Summer Specials’ for some of my online courses and products. Summer is a great time to kick back and take in some new learning at your own pace.

From now until July 31st, 2013
You can get 50% OFF PRES® digital products!

PRES® HOME STAGING HOME STUDY COURSE – On Line Course – ’7 Steps To Creating Your Home Staging Business’ Make Money Doing What You Love! In this 7 lesson, self-paced Certificate PRES Home Staging & Redesign program you will learn how to start and run a successful home staging and redesign business and how to stage and redesign a home. Included are 25 professional template forms all ready for you and your first client!

$497 for 50% OFF = $248.50
$797 with 50% OFF = $398.50
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TOP 10 BEST MARKETING STRATEGIES for STAGERS & STYLISTS-On Line Course – Struggling with what to do next to attract more clients? Not sure who your ideal client is? Fed up with what you’ve been doing to try and get business? In this 6 lesson plus Bonus course Canada’s Staging Guru Dana J. Smithers is sharing how to properly market your home styling and staging business based on over 10 years of proven marketing tactics that grew her business to a 6 figure income!

$397 with 50% OFF = $198.50
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– Do-It-Yourself Home Staging is a simple, easy-to-follow home staging guide that reveals industry trade secrets and a no-fail formula to become “Open House Ready”. Be empowered to successfully stage your home yourself to sell quickly and for top dollar … by following just 10 easy steps! Curb appeal is what creates the ‘first impression’ – find out how to make it a great one!

$19.97 (regular $34.94) for 50% OFF = $9.98
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D-I-Y eBOOK: TRADE SECRETS TO HANGING ART LIKE A PRO! – Do-It-Yourself Trade Secrets to Hanging Art Like a PRO! is a simple, easy-to-follow guide. It reveals industry trade secrets to deciding on what, where and why you hang your art a certain way and how you can always achieve the results you want regardless of the shape or size of what you are hanging!

$9.97 (regular $14.97) with 50% OFF = $4.98
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Enjoy your summer of learning,